Do your teens text and drive? A new study shows that texting and driving is now the number one killer of teens, surpassing drinking and driving. In a story reported by CBS, more than 3,000 teens die in the United States annually from texting while driving, compared to about 2,700 driving under the influence of alcohol, according to a study by Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park.
“The reality is kids aren’t drinking seven days per week — they are carrying their phones and texting seven days per week, so you intuitively know this a more common occurrence,” Dr. Andrew Adesman, Chief Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.
New York has been one of the first to respond to the growing trend of texting-related accidents by creating ‘Text Stops’. Like the traditional rest stop, ‘texting zones’ aim to encourage drivers to pull over before texting.
Two things YOU must do now:
1. Stop using your phone and driving yourself. Turn your phone to silent and place it on the back seat. Show your children from a young age that this is what you do and normalize not responding to or using the phone in the car. Role modeling is crucial.
2. Think before you text or ring your child. If you know that they are or might be driving don’t do it!